By H.St.V.Beechey


I babysit in the soft warm sand.She runs about on sturdy legs.Perhaps she is sitting me—I do not run much any more.She calls to me. “Great-grand-papa!”Each consonant crisp as a race-caller.”Great-grand-papa. Come quick! See? What is it?”Creaking, I answer her urgency, to where she squatsHer attention pointing out the tiny creature.

Once, before I was great—before I was grandI would have answered her. A lesson. A lectureOn the hermit crab.But now I am wiser. “What do you see?”

“He is carrying his house.””And then? Tell me!””He is little, and he is frightened.””But?””But he is brave. He has a bitey hand, and he clicks it.”His eyes are little sparks.”He is a baby monster but I am not afraid!What is he?”

“Look long and remember, little one.” I say.”THAT is what he is! ”

Note: The Young’n is a poem about his Great-Grand Daughter Vanessa Pike-Russell